Quantcast
Channel: a l l e g r o c a n t a b i l e
Viewing all articles
Browse latest Browse all 66273

Farmers are opening up windows to their lives.. and the public is throwing rocks through them

0
0

mad-hare:

Disclaimer: the purpose of this post is not to discuss why farmers are opening up on social media (ie for their own economic benefit or whatever other malicious thing you believe they are out there doing). this post is also only in reference to livestock farming, as farmers tend not to get death threats over what form of tillage they choose to use or how their crop rotations are organized.

This morning a link popped up on my facebook to an article by a farmer titled “New Etiquette Lessons: “Please Call the Vet…” “Please Mind Your Own Business”

The article revolves around a farmer who has chosen to open up their life and work on their farm to the public eye, and they pay a price that all producers are familiar with: public scrutiny. Livestock farmers who choose to share their lives often do so because they always hear the call that people need to understand where their food comes from.

In my mind, this issue can be summed up very easily: farming is a profession, but it is not respected by the public as such.

To be a farmer, one does not need a degree, but the amount of knowledge required to run a farm is immense. People with no background in agriculture, who attempt to “throw it all away” to farm, jump into a deep pool with no knowledge of swimming. If these people do not have an immense savings or business plan in place, they often will fail at this endeavor. Similarly, small community gardens can fall to shambles without the knowledge, or time, of someone with horticultural experience. I’ve seen that firsthand.

Raising livestock is a lifestyle filled with tough decisions, heartbreak, intuition, and judgement calls. As a profession, a farmer needs to survive off of the decisions they make in management. A livestock farmer requires thorough medical and nutritional knowledge to run their operation, and while veterinarians, nutritionists, and contractors, pay an important role in these operations, a farmer cannot rely on these professionals to the point of bankruptcy. A farmer’s end goal is to provide the public with food products that they want to buy, and can afford, and in this mission they need to balance their expenses to pay their feed bills, and their own bills. In this process, the farmer knows when to call a vet, when to treat an animal themselves, or when to euthanize an animal.

The farmers who have thrown themselves to the wolves by posting their day-to-day business on social media, are offering a free service to the consumer interested in education. These farmers love to hear comments, questions, and concerns, but the public eye has no right to scrutinize these people as if they know nothing.

Farmer Tim on Facebook shares cow hoof maintenance and other day-to-day practices on his dairy farm
(A proper question is to ask if the cows dislike it, if it hurts them, what happens if this is not done. Accusations, and baiting? Not so welcome.)

Taranaki Farm in Australia shares their livestock rearing practices with a mostly respectful public.

Polyface Farm in Virginia offers support for the budding entrepreneur with innovative practices, lessons, and tours.

There are many more farmers on social media. Of course the attacks tend to be related to animal welfare or use. And as I’ve said before, livestock welfare is not intuitive to someone who doesn’t work with livestock. Please, feel free to interact with these farmers and raise your concerns with them, but do so in respect of their profession, because they are more knowledgeable than you may want to give them credit for!


Viewing all articles
Browse latest Browse all 66273

Latest Images

Trending Articles





Latest Images